By Maxwell Okamafo Addo
The wife of the Vice-President, Mrs. Matilda Amissah Arthur, has stated that parents and teachers, need to collaborate so that children entrusted into their care grow up to become not just academically good, but to be able to fit into society
She said, giving children the opportunity to learn beyond the classroom offers them a whole host of opportunities that you cannot find within the confines of the four walls of a classroom, but she believes that children must be taught in a structured way in the classroom.
She made the statement, when she delivered her keynote address at the official launch of the Second Edition of this year’s Extra and Co Curricular and Expo Edition (ECCE) 2014 organised by Diffusion Brand Consultancy, which seeks to bring fruition to the dreams of young Ghanaians, who are seeking to give children a rich and fulfilling education.
The Wife of the Vice-President, went on to state that a holistic approach to child development which seeks to address the physical, emotional, relational, intellectual and spiritual aspects of the child, was necessary to be able to grow and fit into society without any problems.
Whilst the classroom offers some of the above, the out-of-classroom activities in a lot of ways offer the emotional, relational and spiritual aspects, while hammering on the intellectual as well, so taking children beyond the classroom is like unclipping their wings-suddenly their minds are free to explore, they shed all inhibitions and even the shy ones open up and play together.
The Second Lady, said as parents we all know that children learn more when they are happy and engaged-it’s amazing how much children learn through creative activities and creativity has been found to aid learning, as well as physical development. This is what we want to emphasize, encourage and get our teachers and parents to engage in.
She said, these days the number of obese children you see around is alarming. Children are driven to school and spend all their time in the classroom. When they get home they either sit behind the TV or play computer games. Yes, the TV and computer games teach, but we should concern ourselves with what they watch.
“Some of the children if not guided will create their own activities, some of which will be dangerous and deeply anti-social, so please concern yourselves with the activities your children engage in after school “.
The organizers of the programme, from Diffusion brand Consultancy said this was the second edition of the program so chose the theme “going within and beyond “ because they have identified challenges such as low student achievement results in comparison with international standards, high rates of students dropping out before completing high school, many graduates deemed by employers as not ready for the workforce and significant inequalities in that students from disadvantaged background, being more likely to receive low quality instruction, were less likely to graduate from high school, or to transition to college, so the need to organize this.
Some of the speakers at the function were Mr. Anis Haffar the founder of GATE institute who shared his view on quality education in the country, Dr Marilyn Wilson a medical doctor at the Princess Marie Louise Children hospital with her specialty including diagnosing and managing children with learning disabilities, intellectual skills and attention defect.
The Second Lady took the opportunity to go round the exhibition centre at the African regency Hotel to interact with the exhibiters and participants.